Son of ex-school board member pleads guilty in bitcoin case

Markets Associated Press

The son of a former Florida school board member pleaded guilty on Monday to conspiracy charges in a bitcoin case, acknowledging he participated in a money exchange business that used bitcoins to launder cash for cyber criminals.

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Anthony Murgio, of Tampa, Florida, faces a decade or more in prison at a June sentencing in Manhattan. Murgio, 33, admitted he knew he was acting illegally when he participated in the crooked money exchange business.

Murgio's father, Mike Murgio, pleaded guilty to reduced charges in October and faces sentencing this month. He resigned from the Palm Beach County School Board after his April arrest.

Prosecutors said Antony Murgio, his father and another man, who also pleaded guilty in October, operated a phony Florida-based business called the Collectables Club. Authorities said it allowed criminals to buy bitcoins to launder their money under the pretense they were buying stamps and sports memorabilia. They said Murgio processed more than $10 million in illegal bitcoin transactions.

Murgio admitted carrying out the crimes from April 2013 through July 2015.

Although he can request leniency at sentencing, his plea agreement requires him to accept any sentence less than 12 years and seven months in prison rather than challenge it on appeal. He also has agreed to forfeit any property derived from his crimes.

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He remains free on bail.